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Details Announced for Site-Specific YEAR OF MAGICAL THINKING Starring Kathleen Chalfant

Details Announced for Site-Specific YEAR OF MAGICAL THINKING Starring Kathleen Chalfant

This event will be staged in non-traditional theater spaces including living rooms, libraries, and other community spaces throughout New York City.

Keen Company has announced details for its site-specific production of Joan Didion's The Year of Magical Thinking. Starring Obie and Drama Desk Award winner Kathleen Chalfant in a one-woman tour de force performance. This must-see revival, running October 19-November 20 with an opening set for November 2, will be intimately staged across New York City. Tickets are currently on sale at www.keencompany.org.

Adapted from her best-selling memoir, The Year of Magical Thinking recounts Joan Didion's journey of loss, perseverance, and ultimately hope, using her signature wit to draw an intimate portrait of the resilience of the human heart. As conceived and directed by Keen's Artistic Director Jonathan Silverstein, this unique theatrical event will be brought directly to the people, staged in non-traditional theater spaces including living rooms, libraries, and other community spaces throughout New York City.

This Keen Company presentation is the first time Didion's play has been seen in New York since its premiere on Broadway at the Booth Theatre in 2007.

"I am very excited about sharing Joan Didion's story across New York City," said Kathleen Chalfant. "I've been wanting to speak these words ever since I first heard she was adapting her memoir for the stage. I've always felt a deep connection to Didion's work, especially the rhythm of it, maybe because we're both native Californians and there's a particular California way of thinking, a particular California rhythm that she captures. I'm also very eager to share this work in the intimate settings we are envisioning for it. Though the story is very specific to Ms. Didion's life and world, what it talks about is, as she says, something that 'will happen to you'."

"I am honored to be reuniting with Kathleen Chalfant, who was last seen on the Keen stage in A Walk in the Woods giving an enthralling Drama Desk-nominated performance. Kathy and I have been dreaming of working on Joan Didion's masterful play, The Year of Magical Thinking, for quite some time. I am thrilled to be exploring this story of surviving unimaginable events, presenting it intimately and non-traditionally in living rooms and community spaces throughout New York. I hope the audience's close proximity to this powerful story, told by one of our most brilliant actresses, will be a one of a kind, unforgettable and resonating theatrical experience."

The creative team for The Year of Magical Thinking includes Jennifer Paar (costume design), Anshuman Bhatia (lighting design), Corinne Woods (line producer), and Arthur Atkinson (stage manager).

Performances of The Year of Magical Thinking will take place October 19-November 20, 2022 in spaces across New York City. Critics are welcome as of October 25 for an opening on Wednesday, November 2. Tickets, which start at $55, are available at www.keencompany.org. Standard ticketing fees apply. The running time is approximately 90 minutes, without an intermission.

Locations and a detailed performance schedule can be found below. Exact addresses will be provided to ticket buyers on the morning of the performance. Additional performances and locations will be announced at a later date.


Please visit www.keencompany.org/theyearofmagicalthinking for more information on the production.


Kathleen Chalfant


In a career spanning more than five decades, Kathleen Chalfant's performances on stage, screen, and television have garnered her praise and acclaim from critics and audiences alike. Perhaps best known for her shattering portrayal of Vivian Bearing, a scholar battling cancer, in Wit, she received the Obie, the Drama Desk, the Lucille Lortel, the Outer Critics Circle, the Ovation, Connecticut Critics Circle, the Garland, and the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Awards for her work. BROADWAY: Angels in America (Tony and Drama Desk nom.), Racing Demon, Dance With Me. OFF-BROADWAY: A Woman of the World, Wit (Drama Desk, Lucille Lortel, Outer Critics Circle, Drama League, Connecticut Critics Circle, Obie Awards), For Peter Pan on Her 70th Birthday, A Walk in the Woods (Drama Desk nom.), Tales from Red Vienna, Miss Ovington & Dr. Dubois, Talking Heads (Obie Award), Dead Man's Cell Phone, Nine Armenians (Drama Desk nomination), Henry V (Callaway Award).

Joan Didion


Born in California and a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley, Joan Didion (1934-2021) spent her adult life in New York and Los Angeles. Winner of the 2005 National Book Award, The Year of Magical Thinking is one of 13 books by Joan Didion. Her other books include Play It As It Lays, Democracy, Slouching Towards Bethlehem, The White Album, Salvador, Miami, and Political Fictions. With her husband, John Gregory Dunne, she wrote the screenplays for such pictures as The Panic in Needle Park with Al Pacino, True Confessions with Robert De Niro and Robert Duvall, A Star Is Born with Barbra Streisand, and Up Close & Personal with Michelle Pfeiffer and Robert Redford. She was a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, which awarded her its 2005 Gold Medal in nonfiction. She also received the 1996 Edward MacDowell Medal, the 1999 Columbia Journalism Award, and the 2002 George Polk Book Award. She contributed to various periodicals, most frequently The New York Review of Books.

Jonathan Silverstein


Jonathan Silverstein's work as Keen Company Artistic Director: This Space Between Us, Hear/Now: LIVE!, 1993, Molly Sweeney, Ordinary Days, Later Life, Lonely Planet, When It's You, Tick, Tick...Boom!, Travels With My Aunt, John & Jen, Middle of the Night, The Film Society, The Old Boy, Marry Me a Little. Also with Keen: Lemon Sky, The Dining Room (Drama Desk Award: Outstanding Ensemble), I Never Sang For My Father, Tea and Sympathy, and The Hasty Heart. Selected Off-Broadway: The Temperamentals (Drama Desk Award: Outstanding Ensemble), Red Herring (FringeNYC; Outstanding Direction Award), Blueprint (Summer Play Festival), and The Train Play (Clubbed Thumb). Regional: Buck's County, Huntington, Old Globe, Cleveland Play House, Merrimack Rep, Dorset Theatre Festival, Cape Rep Theatre. Alumnus, The Drama League Directors Project. MFA, UCSD. Member, SDC.

Performance Schedule and Locations


Previews
October 19 and 20 at 7pm - living room, Prospect Heights, Brooklyn
October 21 and 22 at 7pm - living room, Ditmas Park, Brooklyn
October 23 at 5pm - living room, Kensington, Brooklyn

Press Previews (single tickets only)
October 25 at 7pm - community space, Boerum Hill, Brooklyn
October 26 at 7pm - living room, Upper East Side, Manhattan
October 27 at 7pm - living room, Upper East Side, Manhattan
October 28 at 7pm - living room, Upper West Side, Manhattan
October 29 at 7pm - living room, Upper East Side, Manhattan

Opening: November 2 at 7pm - living room, Midtown East, Manhattan

Regular Performances
November 3 at 7pm - living room, Upper East Side, Manhattan
November 4 at 7pm - living room, Greenwich Village, Manhattan
November 5 at 7pm - community space, Mott Haven, Bronx
November 5 at 7pm - community space, Forest Hills, Queens
November 12 at 7pm - community space, South Bronx, Bronx
November 16 at 7pm - living room, Gramercy, Manhattan
November 20 at 5pm - living room, Upper West Side, Manhattan

Additional performances and locations will be announced at a later date.

About Keen Company

Keen Company is a Drama Desk and Obie Award-winning Off-Broadway company creating theater that connects. In intimate productions of plays and musicals, we celebrate the complexities of hope and the joys of the human condition. Keen also fosters mid-career playwrights through our Keen Playwrights Lab and mentors students from all five boroughs of NYC through our Keen Teens education program. In everything we do, Keen Company thrives through our welcoming ethos and community commitments. www.keencompany.org



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